Letters to the editor for Nov. 21, 2019
Animal Rescue Relay is terrific
Animal Rescue Relay is a wonderful organization and as the article stated, I was one of the first recipients of a dog, which turned out to be the lover of my life.
But I had a bit of a problem — the dog I named Lily was very athletic and was able to jump 2-5 feet fences.
I tried everything imaginable to break her of this habit but nothing worked.
My son and neighbors were getting a bit tired of helping me catch her and I was afraid she would be hit and killed on County Road.
I went to Max’s Pet Supply to get names of dog trainers in the area and received the name of KC Carter. The end of the story is KC took her and has done an outstanding job of re-homing her and training her and she now has her completely in control.
I think the Animal Rescue Relay is a wonderful organization and I just wanted to complete the story.
Vote ‘no’ on Park swap
Park Ranch Holdings proposes to grant a right of way for the re-alignment of Muller Parkway in exchange for the right to build 2,500 homes, with the density approved all at once. Many of the homes would be built on land currently designated agricultural in our master plan. This proposed swap has twice been denied by the Douglas County Planning Commission. (Note – the second rejection happened last week.)
The county would accept primary responsibility for the completion of Muller Parkway and call it a “bypass” even though the large trucks already heavily impacting our main thoroughfare will not be allowed to use it. Little funding is in place or forecast on the near horizon for the construction of Mueller Road, and this swap would increase the responsibilities of county maintenance/repair. The county would be responsible for increased funding for schools to accommodate the increased enrollment, additional law enforcement and first responder requirements, and the obligation to provide water and sewer services to the 2,500 homes. It would certainly appear the current residents of our valley will have to pay for all of this without the benefit of a better environment or improved quality of life. Little information has been published or otherwise provided to the public that would prove there have been adequate studies performed to assess the possible impact of the increased traffic, pollution (including light pollution), possible flooding, depletion of our unpredictable water supplies, law enforcement and first responder capabilities, school capacities and other needs or requirements. The fact that the planning commission does NOT support or recommend this amendment to our master plan should be respected.
This one-sided proposal should be rejected by our county commissioners as this swap is to the clear detriment of our beautiful valley and its residents who came here or stay here to avoid the bumper-to-bumper traffic or other areas that did not adequately plan for their growth. There are already hundreds of homes approved for construction and being built off of Buckeye – why not wait to see what impact that development has on the Carson Valley before approving another 2,500? Please heed the advice of the planning commission and vote NO on this proposal.
Ritch Wagner, President
Winhaven Homeowners Association
Special interests to gain from Park proposal
There are a number of special interest groups with concerns about the Park proposal. Some of them are as follows.
The Park family with their land holdings in the valley will certainly see an increase in their net worth with the passage of the proposal.
Another special interest group is the merchants in the valley, the store and shop owners, will benefit as they will see an increase of 2,500 units in their market size. Since their funds for taxes are in the selling prices of their goods they will not be impacted by any new taxes… they just increase their selling prices and let the consumer pay.
The real estate agents are another special interest group which will see an increase in their market size. Their livelihood is dependent on the fees from the transactions in the buying, selling and renting of property.
Douglas County has a special interest as it will have to make changes to its infrastructure, such as parks, equipment and personnel, to service the 2,500 new families. The school district will also have an interest as it will need to make changes to its facilities, equipment and personnel to accommodate the 2,500 new families. Other groups with similar special interests are the towns, water companies, sanitation groups, fire departments, police departments, etc.
Another special interest group is identified as http://www.taxpayerstrikeforce.com. These people seem to be more interested in vilifying those opposed to the Park plan than offering any information as to the benefits of the plan.
Currently it is difficult to project what will be required in the way of infrastructure, equipment and personnel as none of these groups have any idea of where any of the 2,500 homes will be built within the area and what will be required to service them.
If any land is required for new facilities it will, in all probability, need to be purchased from the Park family.
The costs involved to acquire any new facilities, equipment or personnel to service these new families will be paid for by a special interest group, the taxpayers in the county.
A number of individuals in this special interest group have relocated from California and are quite vocal in their opposition to the Park proposal. I feel their relocation had more to do with their desire to get away from some of the rules and regulations adopted by California rather than bringing those rules and regulations to Nevada. Their concerns should be considered.
I also feel most taxpayers recognize growth is inevitable. They have no problem in using tax dollars in paying for the maintenance and replacement of new infrastructure. Their concern is in the paying for the new infrastructure required by the new growth. The developer is using taxpayer dollars to enhance his property.
New homes will mean more sales dollars and tax revenues, but our Douglas County commissioners should give serious consideration as to the cost, in goods and services along with an increase in taxes, to the citizens of the county. I believe passage of the Park proposal will be a detriment, not a benefit, to Douglas County.
Public officials listen to majority?
Is it true? Did a miracle just happen? Did some of our public officials listen to the public majority?
If that is true, thank you planning commissioners. Now if our county commissioners would only be smart enough to understand they were elected to represent the people of Douglas County, not the big businesses. Well, guess only three of them forgot what their job is.
Proposal seems one-sided
I’m a simple lay person who is trying to understand the Park Ranch Holdings proposal to swap receiving areas between the Topaz Ranch Estates and Minden/Gardnerville. On the face of it, seems to me that what’s happening is that Park Ranch Holdings proposes to grant a right of way for the re-alignment of Muller Parkway in exchange for the following: the right to build 2,500 homes, approved all at once, many of which would be built on land currently designated agricultural in our master plan, the county accepting primary responsibility for the completion of Muller Parkway (and calling it a bypass seems disingenuous when the large trucks already clogging our main thoroughfare will not be allowed to use it) with little funding in place or forecast on the immediate horizon, minimal contribution toward the additional responsibilities the county would assume for infrastructure damage due to increased usage, schools accommodating increased enrollment, additional law enforcement and first responder requirements, and the obligation to provide water and sewer services.
Nowhere have I seen information that would indicate there have been adequate studies to assess the possible impact of increased traffic, pollution, flooding or depletion of our already unpredictable water supplies. What am I missing here? This seems like an awfully one-sided proposal to me, and I am having a hard time understanding why our county commissioners would approve such a deal to the fairly evident detriment of our beautiful valley and its residents.
Not buying it
The headline which reads “The Park 2500 Scam” in Virginia Starrett’s Oct. 31 ad in The R-C is a typical rant. If you say it enough times people will start to believe it. But I’m not fooled. No houses have been approved on the proposed receiving area on the Park-owned land along Buckeye Road. In fact, before one house is approved, there will be many public hearings to review any development that might take place on Mr. Park’s property. The 2,500 number represents a cap of how many residential units could be developed, and under our existing growth ordinance and high land prices, it could take in excess of 50 years to complete such a project.
The second paragraph in the Starrett ad is full of bogus estimates and misinformation that plays to her small base of California elitists who wish to hijack the county board of commissioners for their own self-aggrandizement. This group has no interest in the betterment of Douglas County, but rather they wish to control the future of our small, rural county.
For example, Starrett alludes to greedy developers “who stand to make hundreds of millions.” There hasn’t been a development of this size (proposal of 2,500) in Douglas County or for that matter in the western U.S. that ever made that kind of profit. In her zeal to rally her base and take over the board of commissioners, Starrett continues the CNN mantra of “fake news.”
Another example of misleading information is Starrett’s statement “unlike similar projects, where the developer provides funding for a new school,” etc., “Park will give a pittance.” The average resident will think that Park is cheating the county school system. Once again, the fact is no developer has ever paid for a school in Douglas County. If there is a need for a new school in our county (which there isn’t because our school population has dropped by 17% in recent years), developers are often requested to donate land for a school. This happens during the zoning change request and tentative map stage which, in the instance of Park, will happen some years hence. At the time of obtaining a building permit, each new house built pays a $1,600 school impact fee that goes to the school district for capital improvements, and of course each new home owner will pay approximately $1,500 (based on $500,000 FMV of each house) annually in school tax.
Starrett is part of the “toxic” atmosphere that has been recently created in our beautiful rural Douglas County which has pitted neighbor against neighbor based on her false, misleading or cherry-picked information that we see in The R-C. And when she doesn’t get her way she and her husband use petitions that her cronies are passing around. I urge the residents of Douglas County to research the facts on each and every issue which concerns you.
Celebrating and being honored
Many thanks for your wonderful letter of appreciation for all veterans. I am one of those not often recognized, originally German but spent the war years in England because the U.S. at that time had a quota system to limit the number of immigrants per year. As it was then, some relatives who traveled through France, Spain, and Portugal were admitted to the USA several years earlier than those who arrived via Great Britain.
Arrived in 1947, I was drafted in 1950 and was sent to Germany during the Korean conflict, since there was concern that Russia might push west. We were an assorted bunch, of course most Americans, but there was one I met from Greece, one from Italy, one German who was drafted just a few months after arriving in the USA, one who had just arrived in the U.S. as sailor on a foreign ship and only here on temporary hold over between jobs. All of course mixed with the “local” boys.
Basic training at Fort Benning, Georgia during the coldest winter for 50 years with shortages of warm clothes, etc., since most warm things were urgently needed in Korea. Then the 4th Infantry Division was re-formed and we all arrived in Germany. Returned to USA at end of our two years service, I was demobilized in September and finally sworn in as a U.S. citizen on St. Patrick’s Day, 1953.
Saturday night one Elks Club friend drove us to the Tahoe/Douglas Elks Lodge Veterans Dinner to celebrate 66 years of citizenship and honor Vietnam veterans.
More thanks for your wonderful letter.
RAMAC will be missed
I know that I speak for many who enjoyed the R-C article about the closing of the very successful Town of Minden foreign car auto parts manufacturer RAMAC. Expertly written by former R-C Sports Editor Dave Price, RAMAC located to Douglas County from Santa Cruz, California, in 1991. It is a story of a small business that, over the years, grew to 29 employees and occupied a 57,000 square foot facility in the Johnson Lane area.
Once RAMAC opened its doors, owners Ray and Brenda Robertson, and Michael McLaughlin, capitalized on their marketing and sales skills to grow the company. Working 90 days at a stretch with no time off, they began to see results. Over time the company prospered, with the average tenure of employees averaging 15 years. That speaks directly to the character of the owners. Only the very best small business owners can straddle that delicate balance between striving for profits and maintaining an employee friendly working environment.
Through the years RAMAC became known not only for its products and service, but for its genuine efforts to give back to the community. Brenda Robertson took the lead in that area and the company has generously contributed to the Boys and Girls Club, MEFIYI, Crystal Angels, Community Response Emergency Team, and the University Women. Using her exceptional people skills, Brenda was named volunteer of the year by the National Boys and Girls Club of America. She has acquired a well-deserved reputation as one of the kindest, most giving persons in Douglas County. If you choose to meet Brenda for lunch at one of our restaurants, expect to wait 15 minutes before Brenda takes a seat, as the folks who know her stop her to say hello. When all is said and done, if Brenda Robertson is your friend, you are one of the most fortunate people in Douglas County.
What could be better?